Seventeen members of the Sammy’s Fox Valley Region Club Team traveled to University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa for the USA Triathlon High School National Championships this past weekend. All races were changed from triathlons (swim-bike-run) to duathlons (run-bike-run) due to strong currents in the Black Warrior River that were deemed unsafe for swimming. The high school athletes in Friday’s race instead completed a 2.5-kilometer run, followed by a non-drafting 21.45-kilometer bike and another 2.5-kilometer run. The team turned in some stellar performances to sweep all the award categories, overall team national champions, female national champions and male national champions.
The male athletes started the day off with an impressive showing as four Sammy’s athletes finished in the top 12. Jack DeWeerdt led the contingent with a pair of strong runs and a blistering bike split that landed him on the podium in third place. Justin Lorenz finished sixth maintaining a steady run pace while also delivering a very strong bike. Kyle Izzo was the next finisher and used a combination of strong runs and bike to become the third top ten finisher on the team (ninth place). The fourth and final scoring spot went to Ben DeWeerdt whose swift running led him to a 12thplace finish in his first high school race. The male team score of 273 bested a tough North Georgia High School Regional team (225 points) to claim the overall male team national championship.